Bayon Temple is well know for the many (216 actually) smiling faces adorning the temple.
I was living in Siem Reap for a few months and took these photos during a bike trip from the city to visit the temples. It is a nice bike ride (very flat the entire time). You can also rent tuk-tuks or taxis to tour the sites (I have done that also). I most enjoyed biking myself around. If I remember right it is between 12 and 20 km journey depending on what you decide to see and where start from in Siem Reap.
Bayon temple was built in the late 12th or early 13th century as the official state temple of the Mahayana Buddhist King Jayavarman VII.
Bayon stands at the centre of Jayavarman’s capital, Angkor Thom. Following Jayavarman’s death, it was modified and augmented by later Hindu and Theravada Buddhist kings in accordance with their own religious preferences.
This photo I took on a separate visit.
Bayon was the last state temple to be built at Angkor, and the only Angkorian state temple to be built primarily as a Mahayana Buddhist shrine dedicated to the Buddha, though a great number of minor and local deities were also encompassed as representatives of the various districts and cities of the realm.
This jacket from ScottyeVest (Mens – Womens) is designed with a huge number of pockets to secure all your gadgets and accessories. Sure your phone, headphones, keys, passport but also your iPad, Macbook and power supply. The jacket offers 29 pockets specifically engineered to hold your items and make them easily accessible and usable (for example letting you swipe and use your phone while it remains in your pocket).
This is the type of clothing I would create for my travels if they hadn’t done it for me. The convenience and safety offered by these many options are essentially for convent travel with all your devices and important papers (passport, credit cards, etc.).
Yunnan Nationalities Villages is located on the east bank of Dianchi Lake in Kunming, Yunnan Province, China. All photos in this post are by John Hunter.
The village covers 25 ethnic groups found in Yunnan with examples of traditional houses and guides dressed in traditional clothing. China has a total of 56 recognized ethnic groups. I don’t remember which houses and traditional clothing are which ethnic group (please comment if you have information to share).
Not getting drunk at bars likely proactively addresses a significant portion of issues.
Second, if you are coming from the USA or many other fairly high personal crime countries there are many places you are much safer while traveling. If you are coming from Japan, Singapore, Scandinavia you probably are much more likely to be the victim of crime than at home.
Kuala Lumpr, Malaysia
If you are not drunk the most likely crime is theft, while not good, it is much better than being attacked in my opinion.
The biggest concern in a new environment is that you don’t pick up on the clues of danger that you would in your home environment. This means to be safe you are wise to try and develop the ability to be more skeptical and more attuned to what is going on around you. You may also be the target as you may be more visible, may be seen as rich, may be seen as a jerk (often being drunk helps boost this impression).
There is danger everywhere. But we often exaggerate the danger of new place (new to us). Being careful makes sense, but the dangers away from home are often statistically less though are unfamiliarity may lead us to be less aware and able to avoid situations we find in unfamiliar surroundings. Also, being on your own (instead of in a city with lots of friends that help keep you in line, give you protection in numbers in some situations…) can increase the risk to you, especially again in unfamiliar surroundings.
I doubt learning fighting skills makes much sense. Outside of drunken brawls most places are not that violet and if they are many times it is guns and such things (though most often that level of violence is aimed at other criminals or family and friends).
There is other violence (between people) of course and it is sad and something to avoid. I would be amazed if car and bus deaths (of travelers) and injury don’t exceed by a long way any person on person violence against travelers.
The water has an amazing blue color that seems almost fake in photos but is really the color of these photos. The blue is due to dissolved copper.
The Kuang Si waterfalls are about 30 km outside of Luang Prabang. You can rent a open back pickup for about $30 (really I forget I think it was about that amount though) for the trip or you can join a tour group (easy to arrange at many guest houses and travel agents all over Luang Prabang).
One of the ideas I am exploring for travel around the USA is a camper van. One of the great things about traveling around SE Asia is the ease of finding perfectly fine accommodation at very reasonable prices. That isn’t nearly so easy in the USA.
And also travel around the USA by car offers many advantages over air travel (given how horrible the customer service is for air travel in the USA). Also most places you visit having a car to travel around is necessary. Especially if you want to visit state and national parks, as I would. Really there are a few places, such as New York City where traveling locally is easier without a car, but that is very rare.
This is a very interesting version of a custom built camper van (using a VW as a base):
The customizations are done by Danbury Motor Caravans. Sadly (for someone in the USA) they are in the UK (they also provide vans for Europe). Also the vans are not cheap, but they really are quite amazing vehicles. I hope we see more of these options. Comment with options for those in the USA.
Another interesting option from Danbury is the smallest, and also cheapest (from £19,345) based on a Ford Transit.
I would like something that I can drive easily (not some oversized behemoth), that is comfortable to sleep and work on the computer in (for when the weather is bad). The idea would be to sleep at campgrounds and RV parks and the like (but also with the option of staying at motels and lodges). For those times when you are parking and sleeping without the conveniences at a campground a bathroom option would be nice (but it seems that will be hard to fit – some kind of camper toilet would likely have to do).
I am not sure I will find anything that works but the right option could make for a really useful way to travel. I also probably wouldn’t get one of the Danbury vehicles (due to high prices) but the more of these on the road would mean used vehicles down the road which is something I might consider. Or if I come into a bunch of money then I might be able to pick up a wonderful vehicle myself.